Egypt has long said that it would re-open the crossings if the PA controlled them, rather than Hamas. This plan was for an independent Arab security firm, not affiliated with either Hamas or Fatah, to manage the crossing.
According to the article, Hamas agreed to the idea in theory, and then the PA and Egypt negotiated the plan itself. The two sides announced the agreement on November 18.
Then Hamas quashed the plan. Hamas leaders were upset that they were not part of the negotiations, while Egypt refuses to talk with Hamas. Hamas also insists that some 60 Hamas employees work at the crossing in any plan.
Hamas is said to use the few times that the crossing is open to send their own loyalists through and to extort thousands of dollars in bribes to allow other Gazans to pass through the border.
The Rafah crossing has been open for only 19 days in 2015. Some 25,000 humanitarian cases have been unable to cross into Egypt.
Meanwhile, Israel allows thousands to cross from Gaza into and through Israel every month.
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